Since I was going to be at the conference late tonight, and I’ll be there as well as downtown Chicago in general tomorrow, Husband took Stepson up to his dad’s for a sleepover. Stepson hasn’t seen Husband’s dad in months, so that’ll be nice for them.

However, it leaves me home alone and I find myself unused to this and prone to a serious bout of loneliness.

I used to be a friend of being alone … when I lived with my sister, she was gone almost every night with work or friends. I had a good schedule of staring at the TV until about 10 and then going to sleep. Sometimes dinner or a load of laundry was thrown in there for good measure, with texts flicked off to Husband (then Boyfriend).

But for a little over a year now I’ve spent my nights with Husband steadily by my side. Even if I’m reading or on the Internet while he sits beside me, doing his own thing, there was still a presence and someone to speak to when I had a thought that I wanted to try out loud.

We also switched sides of the bed a few days ago. We had both been sleeping fitfully for a few nights and I decided that switching might help. It worked beautifully. The only fly in the ointment is that Husband has to pretty much roll over me every morning to hit the snooze button on his alarm (several times over). Although it can be annoying to be jarred from sleep like this, the up side is that it almost always concludes with us snuggled up against each other.

Last time I was alone for a spell was in May when Husband was in Costa Rica. I surprised myself by being able to keep myself occupied and then sleep through the night without trouble. This time I’m not so sure. I already feel an ache.

My sister irritated me a little, I have to admit. She and I talked this afternoon about her coming to visit and us hanging out, ending with her sleeping over. A couple hours later she texts to me to say no, she’ll be with her boyfriend instead. I think that kind of solidified my loneliness this time; I was looking forward to hanging out.

I mentioned anxiety in my last post and I’m going to clarify it here. I’ve always had anxiety about going somewhere unfamiliar and being around people I don’t know or don’t know very well. If I don’t know exactly how an event is going to go, I try to talk myself out of it. Sometimes I succeed and sometimes I don’t. Husband calls it over worrying; he’s very good about going to places where he’ll barely know someone and having a good time. He does it every time he goes for a bike ride; it’s a family joke about a time we all went to a brewery together and while we were waiting at the bar Husband turned to the stranger next to him and had a full 15 minute conversation.

The point is, I’m the complete opposite of Husband. So this morning I was walking to the bus and debating whether I should go or not, whether it was worth it, especially when the buses were running behind and I ended up walking to the el. Once I was there and had things sorted out, I calmed down, but it was still nervewracking to be there by myself when all around me everyone had a friend. Tonight (and I’m sure for a good deal of tomorrow) I am pondering the dinner tomorrow night — is it sit down, what if I have no one to sit with, what do I say to the people I’m sitting by, what time should I get there, will it even be fun, what should I wear, is it worth the trip downtown, etc. I’m hoping I can talk myself into sticking with it. I’m forcing myself to honor going because it’s a big part of the LitTrack and to not go would not be good for the piece I’m writing.

And that is enough about my issues for one post.


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